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Grogster
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Posted: 08 May 2018 at 10:38pm | IP Logged Quote Grogster

OK, after about half an hour, I have replaced one 30.000MHz crystal, with a genuine 30MHz one, and just like reg on the PICAXE forums, this module now works spot-on frequency as it should be.

Replacing the tiny crystal package was a pain in the arse. Reg made it sound so simple.... I will practise on another module tomorrow. I think part of the problem is my rework station has a very small nozzle on it - 2.5mm OD, and 1.8mm ID, which is pretty small, and I think it just is not heating up the crystal package evenly enough, cos even if you 'Draw circles' around the package, one side is cooler then the other, and starts to re-solidify and then the bloody thing won't shift.

Even with my rework station up at full-temperature, and air on 2.5 of 8, it took ages to get the old one to move, and ages to get the new one to reflow. Perhaps I am doing something wrong there with my technique. My rework station is a Hako 851 if anyone is interested. It would be quite old now I think. Perhaps it is time I got another one along the lines of something like this.

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CaptainBoing
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Posted: 09 May 2018 at 12:19am | IP Logged Quote CaptainBoing

well done grogs - you are the HC-12 master!!!

I had one of those heat guns... packed up after an hour and got a refund. The magic smoke came out - really!

Went for one of these (same item, different seller) instead and it has done sterling work with no hassle

seen on the benches of a few leccy nerds I follow on YT also

Edited by CaptainBoing on 09 May 2018 at 2:41am
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Grogster
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Posted: 09 May 2018 at 10:10am | IP Logged Quote Grogster

Yes, I have seen those ones around on videos etc often, so they are obviously quite popular. I have ordered one of the ones I linked to. I like that one, as it comes with 9 nozzle types including a QFP one. With this, I am hopeful for better results then with the Hako one with the tiny nozzle, because I can choose a nozzle that is bigger and get more even heating for crystal removal/replacement.

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Turbo46
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Posted: 09 May 2018 at 4:45pm | IP Logged Quote Turbo46

Well done Grogster!

Just when I was going to buy some to play with. All I need to know now is - where to buy genuine HC-12s from? Am I best to always buy them from the one supplier so they all should at least be compatible with each other.

Looking at the many hits I get on the web only the ones on the HC01.com site look genuine that I can tell but I don't know how to purchase from them.

Bill
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Grogster
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Posted: 09 May 2018 at 10:18pm | IP Logged Quote Grogster

Turbo46 wrote:
Am I best to always buy them from the one supplier so they all should at least be compatible with each other.


Yes, probably.

Turbo46 wrote:
Looking at the many hits I get on the web only the ones on the HC01.com site look genuine that I can tell but I don't know how to purchase from them.


That's cos h01.com is the genuine manufacturer of the HC12 modules.
You can't purchase from them for the same reason I and many others can't - we don't speak Chinese so can't decipher the website.

I would love to order direct from them too, but.......

Modules from this seller look to be genuine, but that is only going on their word. As a guide, genuine ones should cost about US$5 or so each. The cheap ones for half that price are most likely fakes.

I have also bought more then 100 HC-12's from this store and they have all been genuine, but there is no way to know if they are also now being supplied with the fakes. I have purchased five from them again last week, and when they get here, I will test them.

The first link above do seem to make a point of saying they order all their stock from the manufacturer, so they are probably one of the safest traders at the moment - assuming what they say there about that is in fact the truth.

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CaptainBoing
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Posted: 09 May 2018 at 11:53pm | IP Logged Quote CaptainBoing

Grogster wrote:
... when they get here, I will test them.


that little gadget you made is going to earn its keep! A great addition to the test gear in your lab (and several others I suspect ) I would be tempted to bolt on a MM and have it run a series of tests just to give a Go/NoGo indicator as a complete stand-alone box.

Edited by CaptainBoing on 09 May 2018 at 11:54pm
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MicroBlocks
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Posted: 10 May 2018 at 12:44am | IP Logged Quote MicroBlocks

@Grogster,

Could you measure the HC-12 module. I am busy with the tibbit enclosure and i think it will fit nicely when i include a footprint for such a module.
I have ordered some but the sooner i get the dimensions the better.:)

ONLY when you have time of course!!


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Grogster
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Posted: 10 May 2018 at 9:20am | IP Logged Quote Grogster

@ CaptainBoing - Now that's an idea! Hmmmmmm.........

@ MicroBlocks - Here you go:





I cropped this image from one of the listings on AliExpress.

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Andrew_G
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Posted: 10 May 2018 at 9:44am | IP Logged Quote Andrew_G

Hi Grogs et al,
My investment in HC-12s (12 off) is very minor compared with many of you but I still would like to know where I stand. My existing modules have the HC01 website and two holes clearly visible on the silkscreen side and the crystal is clearly marked:

CEC 4J
30 00L

The USB (2 off) versions are yet to arrive (as is Grog's tester - but won't be long).
In the absence of any real test gear can you confirm that the only way I can tell which variant I have is to fire them up and see if they talk to each other? (this will be easy enough).

(As Grogs is at pains to point out, a pair of either version will talk to each other but a mixture is a real PITA.)

Cheers, Andrew

Edited by Andrew_G on 10 May 2018 at 9:45am
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Grogster
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Posted: 10 May 2018 at 10:05am | IP Logged Quote Grogster

Andrew_G wrote:
In the absence of any real test gear can you confirm that the only way I can tell which variant I have is to fire them up and see if they talk to each other? (this will be easy enough).

(As Grogs is at pains to point out, a pair of either version will talk to each other but a mixture is a real PITA.)


Pretty much. Do you happen to have a UHF scanner radio? I linked to one on the thread about the HC-12 tester, and they are very cheap - US$30 or so, and would probably be a good purchase. These cheap radios are fine as scanners, but I have read some nasty things about their transmit performance, but all I ever wanted it for was for the scanner so I can listen to a frequency. They are a real easy way to find out if your modules are to spec(on frequency) or not.

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Andrew_G
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Posted: 10 May 2018 at 11:03am | IP Logged Quote Andrew_G

Hi Grogs, No to the UHF (I checked out your listing but was waiting to see how this story unfolded). I have several VHF radios and HF (SSB) receivers but no UHF.
With the UHF radio you linked to; I assume one just maximises the signal at a frequency (or let it scan to it) and all you will hear will be squawks with each bursts of data?

I otherwise don't need a UHF radio so is there any more-generalised kit that would do the task plus others? (If not I'll order one)
Cheers, A.
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Grogster
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Posted: 10 May 2018 at 1:04pm | IP Logged Quote Grogster

Yes, with the radio I am using, you just select the UHF band with one button, then just dial in the frequency you want to listen to and when the module transmits, you will hear an audible blurp of data at that frequency.

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